Redstor has spent a seven figure sum on an ecommerce-based self-service portal for MSPs. The plan is to streamline onboarding and management of a range of applications, especially including Microsoft 365 and G-Suite. It aims to use this to beat the other vendors supplying backup and DR solutions who have not updated their selling mechanisms.
Chief Product Officer James Griffin (pictured) tells IT Europa: “In the need for differentiation, as MSPs look to the product portfolio, a major feature is the way they trade. Even though the technology has changed, the service model hasn’t. I point to that as a way to differentiate against another partner selling another solution. If the MSP can provide a protection system in minutes rather than a week, that has to be a good advantage.”
“What we are seeing with beta customers is the speed advantage so that customers get their service a lot quicker. In just a few clicks it is now possible for MSPs to onboard, convert, provision and bill as well as gain access to margin-rich, repeatable revenue from a solution that is simple to deploy and manage.”
Simplicity and speed are the key ideas, he says, and it is a new way of doing it. The other benefit that is enabled by the AppDirect piece is that the market is there in place, and the MSPs can concentrate on the other parts of the issue. “Working with bigger vendors, a lot of MSPs are finding they are given portals and MDF if big enough but left to their own devices to sell and market. We have a team that is experienced in creating demand among end-users, and we are now pointing that team to work with the partners.”
“Because the platform is established, they can lean on our team for support, we will help them to market, take fiction out of the process, help them to differentiate through the products. We think the overall message is a powerful one.”
AppDirect is a very powerful tool for adding new tools, he says and it also gives input on where markets are going. “There are very strong short-term signals from AppDirect – obvious things like Office 365 selling well across the planet, but also showing G-suite coming from nowhere and going like crazy. I hadn’t planned on launching a G-suite product, but we have pivoted. It also shows anything dealing with malware or cybersecurity is also selling strongly. We’re not going to be a cybersecurity company but it has informed some of the product decisions. We will introduce an AI-informed malware-aware backup product later this year. This will be a simple add on to things like office-365.”
“For us it is strategic because we want to move more to data management, so our partners can add more of a service. So we need to see more of the data. The strategy is to be more connected to more SaaS platforms giving them more monetisable insights. That is information I get from partners, AppDirect and the community which allows us to step outside what we have done before.”
“We will measure success by net new partner acquisition, revenue through the platform and reduced time to first revenue for us and partners. We have firm targets on this because of the investment.”
And it might be good timing in the current crisis. A local business might ring up and ask for Office365 backup – it could be sold over the phone, and customers up and running very quickly, as he explains. Where the skill needs to develop is in the delivery and marketing to the customer. There is a lot of room for development here, he concludes.
Archana Venkatraman, Associate Research Director, Cloud Data Management, IDC Europe, said: “Redstor is redefining the data protection market with its pivot to cloud data management, ML-driven automation, cloud-native support, API strategy, and a mission to make backup a proactive aspect of data-driven strategies.”
Find out more about how Marketplace will change the model from Redstor and an MSP using it with this special webinar on September 22 at 3 pm